Cool idea on a hot night

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Beacon Hose volunteer installs department’s air conditioner for woman

BEACON FALLS — Trapped in sweltering temperatures with a broken air conditioner, 85-year-old Hilde Piagneri’s only companions were heat on the outside and heat on the inside.

Piagneri called George Langley, her neighbor in Pond Spring Village, whom she said she calls whenever she needs help. Langley discovered the air conditioner was broken and called multiple HVAC professionals, but none of them could fix Piagneri’s air conditioner on a Saturday night.

“I thought, ‘Oh my God, I’m stuck here,’” Piagneri said.

Langley then turned to Beacon Hose Co. No. 1. Around 7 p.m. July 20 he reached emergency medical responder Kyle Brennan, the only person in the Beacon Hose office at the time.

Brennan, who has been a volunteer with Beacon Hose for just over five years, had an idea: He was sitting next to the office’s easily removable air conditioning unit, so he drove it to Piagneri’s house and installed it in her bedroom.

“I knew that it was going to be awfully tough to actually fix that unit with whatever resources we had, so I just immediately went to thinking, ‘OK, where can we get some air conditioner to help out?’ And we just so happened to have one in the office just as I was taking the call,” said Brennan, who is a contributing sportswriter for the Citizen’s News. “I figured, at the very least we could get our air conditioner into her bedroom so that she could be safe and sleep for the night.”

After installing the air conditioner in her bedroom window, Brennan told Piagneri to close her bedroom door so she would have one cool room, as the rest of her house was still around 85 degrees.

Piagneri slept through the night without any issues. The next day, HVAC professionals fixed her air conditioner, Beacon Hose members came to pick up their conditioner and Brennan went back to Piagneri’s house to check on her.

Piagneri said she was shocked and surprised that Brennan brought Beacon Hose’s air conditioner to her house.

“I never heard of that before, that fire departments bring things like that to your home,” Piagneri said. “It was very wonderful of the fire department to supply that for someone. I thought it was very nice.”

Piagneri said she is also grateful for Langley’s help and called him “her guardian angel.”

Brennan said he is glad he was at the fire station at the time of Langley’s call and was able to help her out.

“Luckily, thanks to some proactive people, we avoided what could have been a bad situation,” Brennan said.